IM your way through law school

Instapundit points to another law prof’s idea to encourage students to IM each in class:

What’s wrong with students pooling their expertise on the fly? The student doing the speaking is not rendered passive. He or she will still have to read the messages quickly and integrate them with existing knowledge. It could be lively and energizing. The students who aren’t chosen to speak will have some way to express themselves, which might help them listen to the student who is speaking, and a spirit of community and collaboration might take hold.

Though I like the ends I think the means picked to achieve those ends are a little naive. It would be great — fun even! — if students used IM in class to discuss the subtleties and implications of laws and policies. And it wouldn’t feel quite so lonely and dangerous when called on in class. However, students, even mature law students, are highly unlikely to do this. Here’s a more likely scenario:

ih8socraticmthd: ****!! I hardly know this case
lawgunner666: lol, sucker, bet you wish you didn’t get hammered last night
lawgunner666: like you did the night before
lawgunner666: and the night before
lawgunner666: and the night before
ih8socraticmthd: shut up and help me
lawgunner666: just say “due process”
ih8socraticmthd: yur an idiot
[ih8socraticmthd answers questions in class]
ih8socraticmthd: that wasn’t so bad
lawgunner666: are you kidding?
ih8socraticmthd: no
lawgunner666: ah, so naive. hope you know how to pump gas.
ih8socraticmthd: i’m gonna change my screenname to ih8lawgunner
lawgunner666: lol, sucker.
[a few minutes pass]
lawgunner666: i’m so good. I just beat minesweeper on expert.
ih8socraticmthd: that reminds me. let’s go drinking tonight
lawgunner666: smartest thing yu’ve said all day

Ladies and gentlemen, I sit in the back row in all my classes. I see scores of laptop screens. This is an accurate portrayal.

Disclosure: I wrote this in class.

3 thoughts on “IM your way through law school

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